Should we withdraw from Afghanistan by Aug. 31, 2021, the Taliban will take over and horrible things may happen. Should we withdraw by Aug. 31, 2031, the Taliban will take over. Should we withdraw by Aug. 31, 2041, the same thing would happen.
Afghanistan is about the size of Texas but flattened out, as big as Alaska. The population is 39 million, and we outsider invading infidels may have killed as many Afghans as the Taliban these past 20 years.
We’ll never know. You can’t call back a Hellfire missile shot from a Predator drone once the little kids come out of the bunker. Drone operators also get post-traumatic stress disorder.
The Taliban had safe refuge every time we pursued them in neighboring Pakistan with 225 million people and nuclear weapons. We weren’t stupid enough to start a war there as well.
We’d already gone a war too far in Iraq, two wars with no draft and less than 1% of the U.S. people in the military. The U.S. Army War College told then-Joint Chief Chair Gen. Raymond Odierno how “horrible” that move was, like Adolf Hitler invading Russia after declaring war against the United States.
Maybe we’ll stop going into stupid wars. Perhaps stamping out the Taliban would be easier than driving American Christianity underground. But it wouldn’t be a lot easier.
Roland Van Deusen